Sequel is somehow the cure for superhero movie fatigue
Mere weeks after the release of “Avengers: Infinity War,” I will freely admit I am at peak superhero movie fatigue.
And yet, somehow, the perfect remedy for that is … a superhero movie.
Just a couple of years since the refreshingly irreverent, refreshingly R-rated “Deadpool,” we get a sequel. Is it as good? No, mostly because it's not as much of a shock to the superhero system and is guilty of some sequel-itis.
If you've seen Ryan Reynolds' first go-round as the red-suited stepchild of Marvel superhero movies, you know what to expect. To give you some idea, I present the first line of the studio's official plot description: “After surviving a near fatal bovine attack, a disfigured cafeteria chef (Wade Wilson) struggles to fulfill his dream of becoming Miami's hottest bartender, while also learning to cope with his lost sense of taste.”
No spoilers: That's not the plot of “Deadpool 2.” Not even a little.
But what's the fun of giving away the real plot? Familiar faces (including T.J. Miller again stealing scenes) return. New faces include Josh Brolin as Cable, and a troubled young mutant played by Julian Dennison (“Hunt for the Wilderpeople”).
“Deadpool 2” feels like more of the same in mostly good ways, which makes sense given the returning creative team.
David Leitch again directs, and “Deadpool” writers Rhett Reese and Paul Wernick are joined by Reynolds on the script, which is further evidence how much he's embracing this franchise as his own.
And let's face it, it is his. Deadpool's self-referential, third-wall-breaking asides keep the movie brisk and funny even when it falls into some of the tropes it sends up.
Other Marvel characters get sent up. There's a reference to “Deadpool” coming in second only to “The Passion of the Christ” for all-time box-office take for an R-rated movie. (Although Deadpool points out that they beat Jesus in the international market.)
And, once again, everything is painted red with an over-the-top violence that is very, well, comic-book. It's so extreme, it's hilarious.
Brolin is pulling a twofer this summer, also starring as Thanos in “Infinity Wars,” a fact which is of course referenced here. He's a great stoic counterpoint to Deadpool's silliness.
I won't spoil anything, but let me say this: The post-credit scene of “Deadpool 2” is EVERYTHING. No joke. I'm bumping it up a star just for that. If you only saw that, it would almost be worth a ticket price.